Since 2013, TLP has existed to help emerging and existing difference-makers develop the hard and soft skills needed to promote racial equity in their leadership. With over 180 alumni and growing, TLP leaders are radically changing the landscape of our community as influencers in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors, as well as in grassroots movements, civic and voluntary board service, and as residents of metro Grand Rapids. For the past several years, TLP cohort participants have engaged in group experiential learning as part of their journey in the program. After identifying topics of interest, each group designs and implements a project related to their respective theme. At the final TLP session every group highlights their learnings through a presentation on their project. Check out the contributions that members of TLP Cohort 9 offered to the community through their group experiential learning below!
Race and Sustainability
Abigail Bruins, Caylie Peet, Jessica Austin, Miguel Velasco, Nancy Morales
The Race and Sustainability group held a fishing workshop for community members, supporting them in obtaining fishing licenses and providing all necessary materials to participate. They had folks of all ages attend, many who experienced fishing for the first time. This group secured funding to continue this project in the future. Follow them on Instagram for future events! And watch their Angling For All video to learn more.
Race and Mental Health
Yolanda Aldridge, Mark Phillips , Mariah Arnold, Kelsey Liebenow, Jaleesa Williams, Gregory Booker
The Race and Mental Health group organized a “Lunch and Learn” space where community members could come together to discuss mental health issues that our communities face, receive wisdom from a panel of mental health professionals, and learn about local mental health resources and upcoming events. They provided lunch from Load-a-Spud, a local Black owned restaurant, and provided fidget materials to attendees that aid in stress relief and focus. The panel featured Melanie Tramper, Strong Beginnings Mental Health Coordinator, Janee’ Beville, lead therapist and owner of Beville Counseling, LLC, and Adnoris “Bo” Torres, Strong Fathers/Padres Fuertes Coordinator.
Race and Health
Atabia Williams, Carolina Lopez-Ruiz, Dawn Kaltenberg VanHorn, Jamecia Thomas , Octavia Mingerink
The Race and Health group created a Black & Brown Maternal Health Advocacy kit. This kit was created for Black and Brown birthing folks and aims to serve those in underfunded zip codes such as 49507 - 49509 in Grand Rapids, Michigan, but holds information for anyone to use. It supplies FAQ's for people to utilize during their pregnancy but these questions can also be used for conversations one would have with their health and medical doctor/team. This project was created with love and concern for our community. The Race and Health group also thanks Kiara Baskin for her resources and guidance in Birth Work and community involvement. This group is grateful for each other and the knowledge and continuous contributions to the betterment of Grand Rapids for black and brown folks. Thank you to our ancestors for their lived experiences and passed down wisdom. Also thank you to every person, organization, and business listed in this toolkit as a resource for their hard work and dedication.